This post is part of a devotional series based on our 2019 Bible Reading Calendar.
God’s purposes in redemption have always been global. He sent his Son, born Jesus, a Jew in a poor family from nowhere special in the Middle East, two-thousand years ago. At his crucifixion, the sign above his head declared him “King of the Jews.” And right that sign was.
But there was also more, something that sign missed. This Messiah of Israel, King of the Jews, a Jewish carpenter wasn’t sent by the Father for just one group of people. The King of the Jews is also King of Creation. The hope we have through Jesus is global.
We see this spelled out in the Old Testament as Isaiah, a prophet of Judah, wrote:
On this mountain, the Lord of Armies will prepare for all the peoples a feast of choice meat, a feast with aged wine, prime cuts of choice meat, fine vintage wine. On this mountain he will destroy the burial shroud, the shroud over all the peoples, the sheet covering all the nations; he will destroy death forever. The Lord God will wipe away the tears from every face and remove his people’s disgrace from the whole earth, for the Lord has spoken. (Isaiah 25:6-8)
Isaiah saw a future celebration–a party with the best food and drinks. And what was the cause? Death was dead; grief, no more. And who was this promise for? All peoples and all nations.
The mission of Christianity is not about exclusion but inclusion. Yes, salvation is through Jesus alone. He is the way, truth, and life; no one comes to the Father but through him (John 14:6). But this Jesus, born a Jew, was sent to be the way, truth, and life for all peoples in all places. Ethnicity does not exclude. Class does not exclude. Education does not exclude. Gender does not exclude. Political sentiments of the day about who is friend and who is foe does not exclude.
The people of Jesus are meant to be the greatest force of love in the world, shining the hope of salvation for all to see–the shroud lifted and death destroyed forever.
Scripture quotes taken from the Christian Standard Bible.